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The Oxford Coma - Morphine EP (Self-Released)

26 October 2014

The major question when it comes to the band The Oxford Coma is whether one should consider them a metal band or not. On one hand, certain songs on this Phoenix, AZ’s band’s new Morphine EP would certainly seem to suggest this, such as the relentless “My Riad,” yet on the other hand, the band themselves don’t really consider themselves a metal band. It actually seems like they are merely emulating the early sounds of one of their heroes: Nirvana, specifically, _Bleach_-era Nirvana. It’s muddy, raw, and in your face with the melodies buried deep although not impossible to uncover.

The six songs here are largely and aggressively political with titles such as “InfraStatic (Thanks Uncle Sam), although the mix is generally so muddled, in perfect Steve Albini style, a lyrics sheet is often needed to decipher what is being sung. Elsewhere, the songs don’t get any lighter with topics ranging from death to attacks upon religion. There are a million, bazillion bands influenced by the discography of Nirvana, but few ever add something new and different to the mix, which is exactly what The Oxford Coma does; a band in to grunge that isn’t grunge at all. It’s an intense yet thoroughly enjoyable release, and the Morphine EP will be released December 2nd.